Kaitlyn Jo Smith Tamrin Ingram

We’re Moving!

The Hive is Moving to Tucson, AZ!

“Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” – Theodore Roosevelt

I am still trying to wrap my head around it all, that for the past year I have been so seemingly stagnant and in less than five months everything I have ever known will be flipped on its head. We went to tour the University of Arizona on a Saturday in December, applied by their January deadline, were selected to be interviewed the first week in February and accepted by February’s second week – a whirlwind to say the least. Come August we will be two of four photo kids (adults?) beginning the pursuit of their MFA’s at U of A.

Arizona film066-editThere was no other choice, when years of hard work and dedication culminate into an opportunity grander than your wildest dreams, you take it. I saw myself west (from the very moment I first laid eyes on the Rockies emerging from the horizon I was in love) but the west is vast and I had no clue which way to go. This is why I didn’t run away right after graduation to Colorado, despite the longing in my soul to be among the mountains. With no job lined up and no money to my name, I knew Columbus would be my home for one more year. This past year I have worked five jobs, made work, perfected my graduate school applications and helped form an artist collective (The Honeybee Squad). This year of drive (while feeling anything but motivated) rewarded me by placing me in the path of the photo department at the University of Arizona, a family I am honored to have been welcomed into.

At the end of July, we pack our lives and our cats into a U-Haul trailer, hug our family and friends tight and begin the 29 hour, 1,990 mile drive southwest to Tucson, Arizona, the relentless desert sun, art and the great unknown. I am terrified. I cannot even begin to fathom what this means for my practice, to be so far away from anything familiar, but I am so grateful for the opportunity to find out despite my fears. More than anything, I am ready to be an artist again, my dreams as big as the western sky.

– Katie

az046A year ago this month I received an unplanned job offer to be the photographer for Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, a wonderful company that is local to Columbus. The job offer knocked me off my feet. On the one hand I needed that job, on the other hand I needed to run away. Columbus was starting to feel like a trap and I had plans to escape to the swamps and leave Columbus in my tracks. After I received the phone call offering me the job I sat down on my bed and cried. Not the subtle sort of weeping that one does when they aren’t sure what to do but the big, loud heart wrenching never ending kind of cries that is entirely irrational and unwarranted but can’t be stopped. I wanted to leave but I knew I had to stay. So I got out of bed and made the decision to leave. Not immediately, but soon. I told myself that nothing was permanent and I was in control of my life.
So I decided to go to grad school. And I’ve spent the last 12 months working towards making that happen. Writing and re-editing artist statements, researching schools, researching artists, researching cities. In December we flew to Phoenix, a day later we drove down to Tucson. When the white Mercedes minivan that we were in navigated off of the highway and into Tucson I felt something. When I looked over at Katie in the backseat I could tell that she felt it too. Something clicked in that moment, something about the city, the landscape, the short stucco houses that felt so familiar. I think we both decided on our own that we were moving in that moment before we even got to the school or met the more than welcoming department chairs.
I’m not sure what the next 12 months will bring, and I’ve never been more terrified of anything in my whole life. Leaving Columbus is going to be tough, leaving my friends and my community that have shaped me into who I am over the last 5 years is going to be a heartache that is tough to get rid of. But I know just as firmly now as I did a year ago that I can’t stay here, and I am so ready to start this next chapter in my career.
– Tamrin


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